Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Sentiments about sentiments!

One of the questions that is asked most often (aside from "Where do I send my cards?" Answer: The Mailroom!) is:
Q: Do I put a sentiment on the outside? Inside? Both? Neither?
Answer: Yes!
We get a selection of cards with each of these options, and it's wonderful to have such a range in each of our boxes. That way a hero with a lot to say can choose a blank card, or someone with just a quick moment might choose a card with a stamped poem inside. Make sure there is enough room inside to write, though; if you put a large sentiment on a card liner in a dark card, line the other half too so our hero can jot a note if desired.


 Q: Can I handwrite my sentiments?

A: No.
We've heard from a few spouses that there was a second of shock when they opened a letter from their husband, only to see another woman's handwriting on or in the card. While they eventually figured out what OWH is, we do not wish to give ANY spouse even a second's pause to wonder about her husband's faithfulness! So please, if you do not have an appropriate sentiment stamp, feel free to leave it blank. (Blank cards are actually the most versatile ones we send - so they're GREAT!)

Q: Can I print sentiments from my computer?
A: Yes.
However, think about what kind of font appropriately expresses the sentiment, however. We see a number of cards with odd combinations. There's a reason stamp designers are stamp designers: they know what makes a sentiment stamp "work" correctly, and they know the typography rules that make it look natural. If you want to print a poem, please be sure you have permission to use it on a card, and give it proper credit; copying a Hallmark poem is not appropriate.

Q: Are there sentiments that are inappropriate?
A: Unfortunately yes!
Please keep it 'clean' - no sexual innuendo, no alcohol-related themes; these are things that should be far from our heroes' minds while deployed, and we do not want to call them to the forefront of their thoughts. We also do not need "thank you for your service" cards without notes in them - our heroes would not use those, but a thankyou note inside one is perfectly appropriate for an AnyHero card.

While we're here - there are also themes that are not acceptable: we do NOT need welcome home cards, baby announcements, party invitations, retirement cards, Martin Luther King Day cards, etc. The more general themes are more use-able, and blank cards can be used for extraneous events/purposes by our heroes. Please stick to our preferrred list of themes: thinking of you/hello, love you, miss you, birthday, thank you, and major holidays.

Do you have other questions about sentiments on cards? Leave a comment here and we'll edit this post with responses! 

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Are we able to write anything on the cards? For example, I wrote Boo on the outside of some of the Halloween cards. Please let me know.
Thanks,
Mary

Operation Write Home said...

As we said above, Mary, we're asking not to handwrite sentiments any more. We've sent out cards that we already got that way, but are asking that it not be a practice that cardmakers continue. Having no sentiment on a card is perfectly okay :)

Anonymous said...

If I have a cardmaking program, may I print sentiments from that and use them in the cards?

Operation Write Home said...

Yes, you can use ones from your cardmaking program :)

Anonymous said...

How about Happy Anniversay?

Operation Write Home said...

Yes, Anonymous, Happy Anniversary cards are fine! ;0)

Anonymous said...

I did not know if my kids would like to send a note with the card on a paper that is not on the card . for the troop getting the card to thank them or send them a coloring page can they do that.
thanks

Anonymous said...

I'm making cards for my Senior Project and I really want to continue doing so. The only thing I'm really confused about is if we need to send envolopes with the cards made.
- Sincerely,
Help.

Operation Write Home said...

Anonymous, envelopes really really help our shippers; they get thousands of cards a week and need to tuck them all if folks don't do that. We're ok with it, but we love it if you're able. Check the "donate/shop" tab on our site for a discounted source for envelopes! :)

JOAN said...

Do you send cards in Spanish? I can make a few since that is my first language.

Operation Write Home said...

Unfortunately we have no idea how to find units that have Spanish-speaking heroes....so we don't send cards with sentiments in Spanish unless we get a specific request. We would put that on our facebook page if we had a request, so follow us and see if that ever comes up. Thanks Joan!